OpEd: Amico Should Apologize After #MeToo Misstep/Marietta Daily Journal

October 18, 2018

OpEd: Amico Should Apologize After #MeToo Misstep

Marietta Daily Journal

October 14, 2018

Recently, Democrat Lt. Governor nominee Sarah Riggs Amico made a disturbing comment during a campaign event that has sexual assault victims and advocates up in arms.

During a speech in Ellijay, Amico suggested that Republican businessman, husband, and father of three, Brian Kemp, “might not make it four years” in the #MeToo era. She insinuated that Kemp – who is a longtime supporter of victims’ rights organizations – will eventually leave office in disgrace.

Sadly, what some call a gaffe is clearly a campaign strategy. Abrams and Amico cannot win on the issues. Their agenda is simply too extreme. So instead, they have decided to plant seeds of doubt and destroy the character of a man with unquestioned integrity. This suggestion is clearly out of left field but so is their ideology.

As a woman and mother of two daughters and two sons, I am ashamed of Sarah Riggs Amico – even if she cannot summon up her own shame.  She harmed the cause of justice for sexual abuse victims by jokingly accusing someone of future assault. Serious charges deserve serious treatment, not self-serving flippancy.

In the General Assembly, I chaired a bipartisan committee created by House Republican Speaker David Ralston earlier this year to develop an unequivocal policy on sexual harassment under the Gold Dome. Subsequently, a strong policy to address the needs of victims was unanimously approved by the House and Senate. Throughout the process, the committee proceeded with sensitivity, compassion and diligence. We put people ahead of politics.

I know Ms. Amico is new to politics but she has no excuse for her insulting comments.  Words matter when discussing issues that matter – especially when running for political office. She should apologize to Brian Kemp, his family, and all of those advocating for victims in our state. More importantly, Ms. Amico should look within herself and realize that no public office is high enough to go that low.

Jan Jones is the state representative for House District 47 in the General Assembly and also serves as the House Speaker Pro-Tempore.